jewish

Moonglow

By Michael Chabon
4
Rated by Jed D.
Sep 21, 2017

A majority of Moonglow's plot focuses on a Jewish grandfather reminiscing on his deathbed to his grandson Mike, an author. 


There are stories about the Holocaust, rockets, the Challenger explosion, hunting a dog-eating snake, and the 18 months the grandfather spent in prison after a fit of rage at his job. As a reader, we aren’t given all the details of every story. We know Mike’s dad is out of the picture, but we can tell what kind of father he was by what he packed in a suitcase for his son when dropping him off at the grandparents’ house:  pajama tops, swim trunks, a fake leather vest

Stir

By Jessica Fechtor
4
Rated by Hannah Jane C.
Jul 9, 2017

​I'll admit I wasn't sure about a memoir that alternated between recipes and recovery from an aneurysm​, but Stir must have won me over because I not only felt the unique disappointment that only happens when finishing a good book, I also can't stop talking about it. Jessica Fechtor's recovery from a brain aneurysm while running on a treadmill is memoir-worthy without the wonderful observations, recipes, and memories. That's why Stir is a multi-layer cake of a memoir, a cake so fluffy with life and beauty, not even an aneurysm can sour it.


Each chapter is comprised of both an intimate essay

The Boston Girl

By Anita Diamant
4
Rated by Caitlin T.
Mar 8, 2016

The Boston Girl is a classic tale of a first generation American woman in the early 1900s trying to start a better life. Addie Baum, an ambitious and likeable Jewish woman now in her eighties, tells the story of her youth to her twenty-two year old granddaughter. Her misadventures in a world unimaginable to her family are touching and amusing, though a little too familiar. At its core, this is a historically based coming of age novel intended for adults about the search for knowledge, love and self.


I rate this book a seven out of ten mostly due to its predictability. I had high

The Honorable Woman

By Hugo Blick
4
Rated by Katie S.
Dec 10, 2015

Change is a difficult process for anyone, but imagine if you were trying to change your father's munition company, which historically provided bombs for Israel against Palestine, to a firm focused on assisting with stability in the Middle East. Impossible, right? Nessa and Ephra Stein are attempting to do just that in this intense mini-series that follows their lives after a Palestinian businessman, whom they have selected to win a major project with their company, commits suicide. Nothing is as it seems--including, most importantly, everyone's relationships with each other. Secrets are

Mar 30, 2012

This nonfiction Holocaust book is not for the faint of heart, or weak of muscle. Its huge size is a tribute to the tireless work of the author. For over 30 years Serge and Beate Klarsfeld have devoted their lives to bringing Nazis to justice. While the couple is best known for being Nazi hunters, what is perhaps less well known are their numerous publications which have brought Nazi crimes to light. In the late 1970s, Klarsfeld published Le Memorial de la Deportation Des Juifs de France (The Memorial to the Jews Deported from France). It lists the names, birth dates, nationalities, and

Aug 27, 2011

There’s nothing like a broken heart to inspire a lofty personal goal, and broken-hearted Delilah Levi aspires to becoming a rabbi’s wife. She achieves her goal only to discover that not all rebbitzins live in wealthy communities, yet all rebbitzins are expected to work alongside their husbands.

As Delilah becomes less and less enchanted with rabbinical life, she quietly, yet persistently, undermines her husband until his congregation disintegrates and she influences him to take a career-killing position in the wealthy Swallow Lake community despite its disreputable reputation within the

Aug 18, 2011

The first in the Rashis’s Daughters trilogy, Joheved is a perfect blend of inspiration, religion and historical fiction. Rashi was a real person who wrote some of the most well-known and studied Torah commentaries in existence. While the name Rashi is widely recognized, little, if anything, is known about his daughters. It was, and for some still is, traditional for fathers to ensure that their sons were taught the Torah and Talmud (commentaries and interpretations of the Torah.) Women were exempt from such learning. While it wasn't expressly forbidden for women to study the Talmud, it was

May 27, 2010

sarahs-key.jpgI have seldom been as disappointed in a book as this one. While the original premise is quite intriguing--an American journalist who has lived in France for twenty-five years,  married to a Frenchman, and with an 11-year old daughter, writes a magazine piece on the Vel' d'Hiv' roundup of Jews by French policmen in July of 1942--but the latter half of the book does not live up to the first half. The book is told in alternating chapters between the Jewish girl forced into the inhumane Vel' d'Hiv', losing her parents, and tragically contributing to the death of her little brother, with

The Girls by Helen Yglesias

0
Rated by Leslie L.
May 7, 2010

The Girls by Helen Yglesias Set in Miami, Florida, The Girls is a black comedy about four elderly Jewish sisters - Eva, ninety-five, Naomi, ninety, Flora, eighty-five and Jenny who is eighty. As the novel opens, Jenny, who lives in Maine, is traveling to Miami to tend to Naomi, who is undergoing surgery for cancer and to visit with her other two sisters. Miami Beach is as much a main character in this story as the four sisters. It's decline from the way it was years ago parallels the physical decline of the sisters. Much happens during Jenny's visit - Eva celebrates her 95th birthday, Flora performs her one-woman show